Copywriting and the Power of Why


the power of why in copywriting


When copywriting, the power of why is a wonderful thing. This is an article I wrote a few years ago about this very subject. I think it deserves another airing. 

Copywriters are just like annoying kids.




OK, let me go back to the beginning.

My kids are all grown up now, but one of their most annoying traits (there weren’t many; they were little angels – honest) was their constant questioning.

Practically every sentence that left their mouths started with ‘why?’

Yeah, I know, it’s how kids learn, but as all parents out there know, it can be very tiring coming up with a constant stream of reasons. And when your response is met with yet another ‘why’, you want to scream.

Well, that’s what copywriters do.

Take me as an example. I’ve been a copywriter for over a decade and have written for just about every industry you can imagine.

Obviously, I am not (and could never hope to be) an expert in everything, which is why my favourite word is ‘why?’

It’s the only way for me to learn about my clients’ business and their customers.

The power of why

When I’m sat in front of a client taking a brief for a new project, I do a lot of listening. That helps me learn about the company’s personality.

I also do a lot of ‘why-ing’.

Most clients understand why I do that and are happy to be questioned. Others feel as though I’m interrogating them and already know the answers to the questions I am asking.

But why should I?

I’m not an expert in their business.

They called me in because they needed an expert writer. Someone who understands how to use the English language to engage, compel and convince their readers to take action. Not because they wanted someone that knows their business better than they do.

By constantly asking ‘why,’ I begin to peel the layers away from their blinkered vision of their company to reveal the real reasons people buy from them.

Through my questioning, I discover the true impact of the product or service we’re promoting and the benefits they bring.

Why should I buy from you?

When a potential customer reads your website, brochure or email, they are thinking:

  • Why should I buy from you?
  • What can you offer me that no one else can?
  • How are you going to make my life better?

They are not thinking:

  • How long have you been trading?
  • Where are your premises?
  • Tell me all about your company

That’s why a lot of marketing content falls flat on its face.

Copywriters understand the readers’ needs and use ‘why’ as a shovel to dig below the surface and unearth the content gems that your customers want to know about.

Your marketing must make an impact

If you want to make a real impact, make sure your content speaks your readers’ language.

Call in a copywriter, embrace the ‘why’, and orientate all your content, so it shows your customers exactly how you’re going to make their life better.

You’ll be amazed at what a few ‘whys’ unearth about your business and how your products and services positively impact your customers’ lives.